I'm issuing an ultimatum: If Giant Bomb wants to retain its relevance as a gaming source, by the end of the year the wiki needs to acknowledge of the rise of the Android as a platform for games. Gaming is starting to arrive in a big way as the Market becomes available in more countries and available on more devices across more networks. Games range anywhere from the tank combat game Panzer Panic, to the racer Raging Thunder, to the addicting Speed X. I know I've already harped on this before, but by the end of 2011, I guarantee that the Android Market will rival iTunes App Store in terms of diversity and quality of games.
Recently, I've been playing:
Pac-Man Championship Edition (no explanation necessary)
SpeedX (dodge blocks as your hurtle down an artsy and seizure inducing "corridor")
Raging Thunder 2 (standard racing game)
Radiant (kind of like galaga)
Panzer Panic (top down tank combat game)
Other great games I've played:
Replica Island (entertaining platformer)
Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? (self-explanatory)
Giant Bombers, it's about time we have a page for Android just like we do for iOS. I want to be able to fill out wiki pages for Android just like any other game, and write reviews as well. It can't be hard to add? I'm willing to take to whichever moderator I need to make this happen.
In May, I discovered the wonders of Steam. It was the answer to my college gaming concerns. Having never been much of a PC gamer before, only dabbling in a couple RTS games from the late 90's and the Sims, my new laptop turned out to be adequate at running most modern games on moderate settings. Steam has become my friend with its insane sales, ability to download most games as many times as I want, and a great selection. DRM restricts the use of the game to your account, but it does not require you to be online at all times. It's a very liberal DRM policy that gives the user plenty of freedom without having to worry about some people exploiting the system.
However, nothing gold can stay. Yesterday I bought Mass Effect for five dollars because it was a game I'd always heard was great, but couldn't play because I have a PS3. So it finished downloading all 10 GB and click "Play" only to be met with the message "Failed to contact key server". After confirming I was still connected to the Internet and wasn't mysteriously disconnected during the two minutes between when the game finished downloading and I clicked "Play", I searched Steam's site for some help, but all they had was this. I knew this couldn't be right because I had download dozens of games from Steam already and hadn't had a problem with one of them.
CD keys? Really? Aren't we a little beyond that archaic copy protection system? Isn't Steam supposed to negate all that? Your login IS your "CD key"! Either the developers were too lazy to edit the code for the Steam release, or EA is too over protective with their DRM.
It's such a paradox. The people who legitimately buy the game, the ones who are giving the developers their due because they appreciate the work that goes into the production of a game get punished because the publisher can't trust them to not share the game. I know people who would pirate games like Mass Effect without a second thought to the morality of the action. And they would be happily playing now, not waiting for Valve to get more CD keys from EA. It's so infuriating that the ones who AREN'T stealing the game have to put up with this bull while you could easily pirate the game and not have to worry about any of that.
DRM NEEDS to die. It has no place today. It does not prevent piracy. It punishes the legitimate user. EA publishes games for incredible developers, but EA as the publisher is garbage. How much foresight does it take to realize taking this action isn't going to save any lost sales. It's not going to prevent the game from being hacked by some guy and uploaded to be downloaded for free. EA should be encouraging their customers, not discouraging them. If I ever have this problem with EA's games again, then I might reconsider legitimately purchasing their games.
Unlike the Wii, it looks like it's actually creating new game experiences not possible with a controller or motion control. This was no more clear than in that MTV dance game. That game looks really fun to me, and it looks like it would be a great work out. It seems really hard, but I bet there are different difficulty modes just like Rock Band and Guitar Hero. I think this is the first motion control device that actually makes me genuinely excited. I don't even own a 360 and have been a PS3 guy since it launched. Kinect frankly offers true innovation. The best part is it works. I'm not looking for full adventure experiences. I'm looking for fun party games and rhythm games.
Basically, Insomniac is having four separate pre-order bonuses at four different locations. Three of the packs contain exclusive content that Insomniac has neither confirmed nor denied to be in the final product, obtainable through gameplay. The best bonus, in my opinion, is the Discover Pack, which contains access to the Insomniac Museum. However, by getting this one you're cut out from getting the other pre-order bonuses, which contain exclusive content that you can only get from the pre-order, unless, of course, you want to go out and pre-order the game three times.
What pisses me off even more is how they've trivialized the Insomniac Museum. In Going Commando and Up Your Arsenal, the game required you to stay up until two in the morning to access the Insomniac Museum, or else complete the game 100%. So it's no longer about skill or being, quite literally, a true Insomniac. Now it's just about where you pre-ordered the game from.
Anyway, I'm done ranting for now, but I'm sure one of you can get me going in the comment section.
Peter Pan! I just discovered I have not updated this since you last visited... You would not believe my anguish at my misdoings. Apologies!.
I am flat out with sleeping my way to the top, soaking in the tub, just generally being a parent to every Lost Boy that crosses my path, my day goes from the second star on the right, straight on to I see my darling's 10000 text messages. I am beyond drunk most of the time. life happens.
I swear I will blog more regularly. Seriously! This is for my ever faithful, devoted public.
365 Tomorrows is a blog of very short stories about possible futures. It is updated every day with a new story, and since I've started following it, the stories have been very entertaining. They're great in the way that they provide you with enough information to understand what's going on, but do it in a subtle way so as to not make it artificial. All of the stories, despite being set in the future, are very relevant. The best thing about them is that you can read them in just a couple minutes and then move on. You're not stuck reading a four or five page story when you have something else to be doing.
I can't remember the last time when I sat down and read through a whole book for the heck of it. On Friday, my friends and I were browsing in a Barnes and Noble next to the restaurant we were at because one of us had to wait for a parent to pick him. At B&N, books are sometimes placed on the sides of shelves just to kind of advertise them, probably to dumb asses like us who wouldn't look at the actual shelves for books. On this shelf-siding, a number of interesting books were displayed.
The most immediately important book on that shelf was The Alphabet of Manliness. One of us owned a copy of the book, and it actually is quite hilarious. The other notable book was The Zombie Survival Guide by Max Brooks, who also authored World War Z, a novel I have not yet read about an eventual zombie apocalypse. There were two copies, which my friend and I bought, mostly for the lolz. Well, yesterday morning, I started reading it. I read for extended periods of time on and off for the next two days, and, I have to say, I'm impressed. The book seemingly "accurately" describes what an ordinary citizen should do in-case of a Solanum (the virus which causes death and reanimation) outbreak. It also describes zombie physiology and past zombie outbreaks. While the entire work is obviously fiction, Max Brooks is able to turn an impossible situation into a likely disaster.
While this book may not be the most literary of novels, I have been inspired to actively read again, something I have not done since Junior High. After I post this blog, I'm off to start reading the Lord of the Rings again. You may wonder why I would possibly need to read a thousand page epic again. Frankly, when I first read them, I stumbled through them due to my lack of comprehension when I was 12 or whatever. Hopefully by now I can read them and thoroughly interpret and enjoy them.
My only regret is that I didn't play any Dead Space... Ah, well. That can wait for another day.
This Giant Bomb experiment has failed. A utopian community of gamers who love games without platform discrimination... we have failed to create this. Don't believe me? Check out my last blog. It's hidden because of all the negative ratings. Why? All it does is showcase awesome games coming to PS3 next year. I don't think I discriminated against anybody... my language is clean (unless you consider "sexy" offensive)... what's the deal? Oh, that's right: fanboys.
For the first couple months of Giant Bomb, this disease was nowhere to be seen. Many of us rejoiced: finally a community where simply discussing of games could ensue. Alas, it was not to be. Fanboyism, the virus which has claimed so many game forums before it (GameSpot, Gametrailers) has proven too strong for us more enthusiastic gamers. This is disgusting.
What happened? Did Giant Bomb become too popular for its own good, attracting the scum of the internet? I mean, we could argue how illogical corporate fanboyism is, but that's not the purpose of this blog. No, I'm calling YOU guys out, you people reading this. Are you part of this infection beginning to plague the only shining utopia of Giant Bomb? If you aren't, what can we do to halt its progress? I'm asking you guys. Speak out and either join my fight, or find someway to defend your actions.
A few days ago I was reading an article about Killzone 2 and it suddenly hit me: There are TONS of games coming out next year on the PlayStation 3. Just check this out.
Sure, it could just be a series of glorified Quick Time Events, but based on the size of the script and the budget, this is a game we should all be watching. It's an emotionally charged story with adult themes. The decisions you make drastically shape the story. For example, if you die, the story will change to take the death of that character into account. Sure, Far Cry 2 also promised this, but Heavy Rain seems that it could live up to this promise. This is just one example of a game that is super-charging 2009 for the PS3.
Ratchet and Clank Future 2
After delivering what some could argue as a somewhat mediocre game this year, Insomniac's turning around to deliver the next installment of the Ratchet and Clank Future franchise in 2009. Announced after the credits roll in their PSN release, Ratchet and Clank Future: Quest for Booty, Insomniac has not said anything about the game except that it's coming in 2009. With that, I do hope that they improve the weapon upgrade system and make the game much harder. Tools of Destruction was only difficult in the final planet. Also, I would love if Insomniac returned to the weapon upgrade system of Ratchet: Deadlocked. I enjoyed swapping out alpha and omega mods to max out weapons' effectiveness. Most likely coming Fall 2009.
You know a game is awesome when IGN's Greg Miller spazes out on camera about it. Will you become a hero? Or will you indeed become infamous? That is your choice in inFamous. The player plays as Cole, a simple bike messenger blessed/cursed with insane electrical powers after being involved in a blast in one section of the metropolis of Empire City. However, it seems Cole is not the only one affected and the federal government quarantines the city by blowing up all of the bridges and dropping supplies for the poor city folk. Of course, Cole realizes that with great power comes great responsibility. The real question is: will you? You don't have long to decide: inFamous is coming Spring 2009.
God of War III
It's the sequel to God of War and God of War II. That's all I can rally say about this. Most likely coming Fall 2009.
Uncharted 2: Among Thieves
It's coming and it looks absolutely explosive. It looks like the best parts of Uncharted: Drake's Fortune are back: third-person action, Nathan Drake, the half-tuck, exotic locales, and balls to the wall action. Nathan Drake has set off to reveal the myster surrounding Marco Polo's lost fleet. Two trailers have been shown: one with Drake finding a dagger with a very distincitve South America pre-colonization look in the middle of an arctic snow field and the other with a bloodied Drake falling out of the back of an obviously run-away train. The gameplay promises to be more stealth focused and include Altair or Faith style free-climbing. Most likely coming Fall 2009.
When this game was first unveiled with what was thought to be an over-confident CGI trailer back in 2006, people were rightfully skeptical. Since then, however, we've learned that this is definitely a game to watch out for. Killzone 2 has a huge, epic campaign and 16 player multiplayer with the ability to use bots. Also, the game simply looks beautiful with most publications arguing the game even looks a little BETTER than the CGI trailer. Also, the developers have made the enemies wicked intelligent and the game difficult, a trait that many games are lacking lately. It seems that Guerilla Games has learned from their mistakes in Killzone 1 and is set to unleash the epic we all know they're capable of. Coming Spring 2009.
Fat Princess is Capture the Flag... with a twist. Instead of a flag, you are trying to reclaim your stolen princess. Princesses are pretty light, right? WRONG. By feeding the opposing team's princess endless slices of cake, this princess becomes porkier and porkier, thus making her more difficult to move. This is a class based game with archers, soldiers, etc. There's even some resource management. This game's unique art style is another success story. This one girl, who had published her cartoons on the internet, must have caught the eye of somebody, and she is largely responsible for this game's existence. This game will be released on the PSN early in 2009
So, what are you most excited for? If I missed something, let me know!
If I could only play inFamous, Uncharted 2, and Fat Princess next year, I'd be a happy man.